Sometimes, I can hardly do Facebook. Of course, no one makes me do it, but I often find that what I perceive as others’ normalcy only serves to increase my feelings of how abnormal my life seems. So, I often have to just turn away and take a deep breath to avoid longings which cannot be realized and which, if take root, would lead to envy and bitterness. Those same feelings can occur when I see couples in a restaurant, when I see tickets available for an event I would like to attend,
My life has a “new normal” and involves reducing expectations, looking at life through a different scope, and a constant awareness of things I can be thankful for.
I’m still working 30 hours each week, and while it can be stressful, I actually excel in this job and it is my only outlet for interacting with other people and for feeling like a “person”. Maybe it’s hard for anyone to grasp why or how I would NOT feel like a person, but after 7 years of care-giving and submitting myself to that role – that is how it feels sometimes. For sure, my feminine person is buried deep within my person. I hardly think about what I put on, rarely shop or buy clothes, don’t have anyplace to go which requires “dressing up” or looking special.
Lest I depress any reader, let me move on for a bit to more positive realities. I am thankful for many things. Maybe I will just list those:
My home – that we have been able to stay there, keep the house fairly well-maintained and paid for.
My children – they are a constant source of support even while they grapple with the loss of their father….and let me diverge here for a moment….in all reality, they have lost their father and I have lost my husband. For Tom was the ultimate father in terms of unconditional love and support for both Paul and Stephanie. His love is still there, but that precious interaction they used to share…and looked forward to…has been almost taken away. I can see in his eyes, and sometimes he is able to express, that he just adores them still, but they miss the dad they knew and have had to adjust to their father as he is.
At another time, I will talk about my own loss of my husband and friend.